tv Whatd You Miss Bloomberg October 2, 2015 4:00pm-4:31pm EDT
between spending we do not need and spending we do. we can revisit the history of how that happened. i have some rather grim memories of it. but the notion was that even as we are bringing down the deficit we would come up with a sustainable, smart, long-term approach to investing in the things we need. that did not happen. and so now, these cuts that have been maintained have been keeping our economy from growing faster. it's time to undo them. we will have then to find our economic and national security priorities in 2016 at the same levels we did in 2006. now understand, during the decade between 2006 and 2016, our economy has grown by 12%. our population has grown by 8%.
new threats have emerged. new opportunities have appeared. we cannot fund our country the way we did 10 years ago because we have greater demands with an aging population, with kids who need schools, with roads that need to be fixed, with the military on which we are placing extraordinary demands, and we cannot cut our way to prosperity. other countries have tried it and it has not worked. we have grown faster than they have because we did not pursue ande blind, unthinking cuts investments are growth area because we have grown faster than them we have brought our deficits down faster than they have. i want to repeat this because the public apparently never believes it.
office, we have cut the deficits by two thirds. the deficit has not been going up. it has been coming down precipitously. we have cut the deficits by two thirds. they are below the average deficits over the past four years. so the bottom line is congress has to do its job. it cannot flirt with another shutdown. it should pass a serious budget. if they do and get rid of some of these mindless cuts even as we are still prudent about the spending that we spending we do not need and that is not working, there non-partisan budget office estimates we will add the next half million jobs to the economy next year alone. we can immediately put half a million more people back to work if we just have a more sensible budget. and in these negotiations, no one will get everything they want. we have to work together.
even if we disagree, in order to do the people's business. some point, we have to want to govern and not just play politics or play to various political basis. -- bases. so we can pass bills rebuild our roads and keeper can's learning and keep our military strong and help people prepare for and recover from disasters. that is congress's most basic job and that is what our government is supposed to do, serve the american people. so, with that, let me take some questions and i will start with julie pace of ap. hang in there, kids. there have been several development in syria that i wanted to ask about starting with russia's involvement. you met with president clinton this week and i wonder if you think he was honest with you about his intentions in syria. if rush is targeting groups , does the islamic state
the u.s. have a military obligation to protect them? more broadly, there have been failures in the u.s. train and equip program. do you believe that her gum can be fixed or do you have to look at other options? would you be willing to reconsider a no-fly zone which several candidates including your former secretary of state are now calling for? first andobama: foremost, let's understand what is happening in syria and how it -- how we got here. what started off as peaceful sad, the against as evolved into a civil war because he met those protests with unimaginable brutality. and so, this is not a conflict andeen the united states any party in syria.
this is a conflict between the syrian people and a brutal, realist -- ruthless dictator. point number two is that the reason assad is still in power is because russia and iran have supported him throughout this process. in that sense what russia is doing now is not particularly different from what they have been doing in the past, they are just more overt about it. they have been propping up a regime that is rejecting -- has been rejected by an overwhelming majority of the syrian population because they have seen he is willing to drop arrow bombs on children and on villages and discriminate lee -- indiscriminately and has been cleaning toed about power than the state of his country. in my discussions with president putin, i was very clear that the only way to solve the problem in a politicalhave
transition that is inclusive, that keeps the state intact, that keeps the military intact, that maintains cohesion, but that is inclusive and the only way to accomplish that is for m transition because you cannot rehabilitate him in the eyes of syria. this is not a judgment i am making, it is judgment that the overwhelming majority of syrians make. and i said to mr. putin i would be willing to work with them if he is willing to broker with his and iran,mr. assad a political transition. we could bring to the -- the rest of the world to a solution but an attempt by russia and and try top up assad
pacify the population is just going to get them stuck in a quagmire. and it will not work. and they will build -- be there for a while if they do not take a different course. i also said to him that it is true that the united states and havea and the entire world a common interest in destroying isil, but what was very clear, regardless of what mr. pridgen notutin said if he does discriminate between iso-and a moderate group that wants to see assad go. that is a recipe for disaster and it is one that i reject. we have a technical conversation about the confliction --
deconfliction so we are not americanssian and firefights in the air. we are clear in sticking to our belief and our policy that the problem here is a son -- assad and the brutality he has inflicted on the syrian people, and that it has to stop and in order for it to stop, we are prepared to work with all the parties concerned, but we are at going to cooperate with russian campaign that simply tried to destroy anyone who is disgusted and fed up with mr. assad's behavior. the moderate opposition in syria is one that if we are going to have a political transition, we
need. and the russian policy is driving those folks underground or creating a situation in which they are the capacity did -- citated and strengthening isil and that is not good for anybody. in terms of our support of opposition groups inside syria, i made very clear early on that the united states could not impose a military solution on syria either. but that it was in our interest to make sure that we were oppositionh moderate inside of syria because eventually, syria will fall. will fall.e we have to have someone we are working with that we can help take up the pieces and stitch back together a cohesive, coherent country. and so we will continue to
support them. the training and equip program was a specific initiative are the defense department to see if we could get some of that moderate operation -- opposition to focus on iso-in the eastern portion of the country and i am the first one to acknowledge it that it has not worked the way it was supposed to. the department of defense would say the same thing. part of the reason, frankly, is because when we tried to get , theto focus on isil response is how can we focus on when every single day we are having barrel bombs and attacks from the regime? to get themen hard to re-prioritized looking east when they have got bombs coming at them from the west. are doing with the
train and equip is looking at where we had success. for example, working with the kurdish community in the east that pushed isil out, seeing if whatuld build on that, but we are going to continue to do is to have contacts with and thatwith opposition rightly believes in the absence of some change in government inside of syria, we are going to continue to see civil war, and that will turbocharge isil recruitment and jihadist recruitment, and we will continue that process. the last point i want to make thet this because sometimes conversation here in the beltway differs from the conversation internationally. putin had to go into syria not out of strength but out of
weakness because his client, mr. assad was crumbling, and it was insufficient for him to send them arms and money. now he has got to put in his own planes and his own pilots. and the notion that he put forward a plan and that somehow, the international community sees that as viable because there is a vacuum there, i did not see after he made the speech at the united nations suddenly the 60 nation coalition we had started lining up behind him. makeu up mr.d putin's: at the moment. the rest of the world makes of hours. i do not think people are full fulle current strategy -- by the current strategy. it does not mean that we could not see mr. putin begin to
recognize that it is in their interests to broker a political in newent, and as i said york, we are prepared to work with the russians and the iranians as well as our partners, who are part of the sil coalition to come up with that transit -- transition and no one pretends it will be easy but it is possible. we will maintain communication but we are not going to be able to get those negotiations going if there is not a recognition there has got to be a change in government. we're not going back to the status quo. and the kinds of airstrikes against moderate oppositions russia is engaging with is going to be counterproductive. it will move us further away than toward the ultimate
solution that we should all be looking for. >> [inaudible] julie,nt obama: throughout this process, i think people have constantly looked a easy, low-cost answer. whether it is we should have said more -- sent more rifles in early and somehow everything -- be ok, or if i had taken that shot even after asaad offered to give up his chemical weapons, immediately, thegs would have folded, or assad regime would have folded and we would have certainly seen a peaceful syria. this is a hugely difficult, complex problem.
haduld have hoped we learned that from afghanistan and iraq where we have devoted enormous time and effort and resources with the very best have given the afghan people and the iraqi people an opportunity for democracy but it is still hard. as we saw this week in afghanistan, it is not by virtue of a lack of effort or lack of commitment. we still have 10,000 folks in afghanistan. we are still spending leads of dollars supporting their government and it is still tough . so, when i make a decision about the level of military involvement that we are prepared to engage in in syria, i have to make a judgment based on once we start something, we have got to finish it and we have to do it
well. thedo we in fact have toources and the capacity make a serious impact understanding that we have still got to go after iso--- isil in iraq and support an iraqi military that is weaker than we perceived, we still have business to do in afghanistan. and so i push and have consistently over the last four, five years, sought out a range of opinions about steps we can take potentially to move syria in a better direction. i'm under no illusions about what an incredible human dietary and catastrophe this is, and the hardships that we are seeing and the refugees that are traveling in very dangerous circumstances
and now creating real political problems among our allies in europe, and the heartbreaking images of children drowned trying to escape war, and the potential impact of such a destabilized country on our allies in the region, but what we have learned over the last 10, 12, 13 years is that unless we can get the parties on the ground to agree to live together in some fashion, then no amount of u.s. military engagement will solve the problem and we will find ourselves either doing just a little bit and not making a difference and losing credibility that way, or finding ourselves drawn in deeper and deeper into a situation that we cannot sustain.
people when i hear asering up half-baked ideas if they are solutions, or trying to downplay the challenges whatved in the situation, i would like to see people ask is, specifically, precisely, what exactly would you do and how would you find it and how would you sustain it and typically, what you get is a bunch of mumbo-jumbo. so, these are hard challenges, they are ones that we are going to continue to pursue, the top line message i want everyone to understand is we are going to continue to go after isil, we will continue to reach out to a rejecte opposition, we
russia's there he that -- theory that everyone opposed to assad is a terrorist. we think is self-defeating. it will get them into a quagmire. it will be used as a further recruitment tool for foreign work to, hiwe will relieve the humanitarian pressure on refugees, we are working with the turks and others to see what we can do along the border to make things buter for people, ultimately, we are going to have to find a way for political transition. reporter: back in july you said the gun issue is the most frustrating of your presidency and we certainly heard that frustration from you last night. in the last 15 months of your presidency, do you intend to do anything differently to get
congress to act or to do something about this gun violence problem, and i have to get you to respond to something that jeb bush just said and to be fair to governor bush, i want to read it directly. asked about the drive to take action in light of what happened , stuffon, he said "look to get and the impulses something to happen and it is not always the right thing to do." how would you react? president obama: i do not think i even have to react to that one. [laughter] i think the american people should hear that and make their own judgments based on the fact that every couple months, we have a mass shooting. of -- and they can decide whether they consider that "stuff happening." do, ims of what i can
have asked my team as i have in the past to scrub what kind of authorities do we have to do to enforce the laws we have and place them more effectively to keep hand -- guns out of the hands of criminals, are there additional actions we can take that might event even a handful of these tragic debts from taking place, but as i said last night, this will not change until the politics changes and the behavior of elected officials changes, and, so the main thing i am going to do is i am going to talk about this on a regular basis, and i will politicize it because our inaction is a political decision that we are making. the reason that congress does modest gun even the
safety laws we have proposed after sandy hook is not because the majority of the american people do not support it. n, normally, politicians are responsive to the views of the electorate. of thee got the majority american people thinking it is the right thing to do. at ground checks, -- background checks, other common sense steps that would maybe save some lives, could not even get a full boat -- vote. and why is that? it is because of politics. because interest groups fund fear and ind people
fairness, unless we change that political dynamic we are not going to make a big dent in this problem. for example, you will hear people talk about the problem is not guns, it is mental illness. if you talk to people who study this problem, it is true that the majority of these mass angryrs are you -- are young men but there are hundreds of millions of angry young men around the world. tens of millions and most of them do not shoot. it does not help us to identify and if the majority of people who have mental illnesses are not shooters. we cannot sort through and identify ahead of time who might take actions like this. the only thing we can do is make not have an entire
arsenal when something snaps in them. to do something about that, the politics has to change. the politics have to change in the people who are troubled by this have to be as intent and as organized and is adamant about on the other folks side who are absolutists and think that any gun safety measures are somehow an assault on freedom or communistic or a plot by me to take over. and stay in power forever or something. i mean, there are all kinds of crack that conspiracy theories that float around there. some of which are ratified by elected officials in the other party on occasion. o, we have to change the politics of this and that requires people to feel -- not just feel deeply because i get a
lot of letters after something like this happens. do something. well, ok, here's what we need to do. you have to make sure that anybody who you are voting for is on the right side of this issue and if they are not, even if they are great on other stuff for a couple election cycles, you have to vote against them and let them know precisely why you are voting against them. you just have to for while being a single issue voter because that is what is happening on the other side. and that is going to take some time. start, has had a good you know? they have been at this long time. they perfected what they do. you have to give them credit, they are very effective, because they do not represent the majority of the american people but they know how to stir up fear, they know how to strip their base, they know how to raise money, they know how to scare politicians, they know how
and theize campaigns, american people are going to have to match them in their sense of urgency if we are actually going to stop this, which is not to say stopping all violence. we are not going to stop all violence. violence exists around the world. it is part of original sin. but our homicide rates are just a lot higher than other places that, by the way, have the same levels of violence. you cannot kill as many people when you do not have easy access to these kinds of weapons. am deeply saddened about what happened yesterday but arne is going back to chicago. let's not forget, this is happening every single day in forgotten neighborhoods around the country.
every single day. just running for their lives trying to get to school. orleansdown in new sitting with a group of young men when we were talking about trina and i have got t -- katrina and i have got two young men next to me, both of them have been shot multiple times. they were barely 20. decision. to make a that think that is normal, we have to own it. i do nothing it is normal. i think it is abnormal. i think we should change it and i cannot do it by myself. so the main thing i am going to do is talk about it. amd hope that over time, i changing enough minds along with other leaders around the country
that we start finally seeing some action. i do not think it will happen overnight. reporter: thank you, mr. president. you said that you will not sign another short-term cr, but as you know, yesterday, secretary borrowingced the authority would run out november 5. would you recommend negotiating an increase in the debt ceiling as part of these budget negotiation's on spending caps and does the speaker's race company these negotiations? president obama: i am sure the speaker's race company to these negotiations. it will come potato negotiations -- comp kate the negotiations but when it comes to the debt ceiling, we are not going back there. maybe it has been a while so let me refresh everybody's memory. raising the debt ceiling does not authorize us to spend more,
it simply authorizes us to pay the bills we have already incurred. it is the way for the united states to maintain its good credit rating. the full faith and credit of the united states. historically, we do not mess with it. if it gets messed with, it would have found implications for the putal economy, and could our financial system in the kind of tailspin that we have saw back in 2007, 2008. it is a bad thing to do. so we are not going to negotiate on that. it has to get done in the next the weeks so even though continuing resolution to keep the government open for 10 weeks, we have to get the debt ceiling raised in five.
you have a shorter timetable to get that done. but, here is the bottom line. mcconnell, john boehner, myself, nancy pelosi, and harry reid, we have all spoken and talk about trying to negotiate a budget agreement. and, yes, speaker boehner's decision to step down complicates it, but i do think there is still a path or us to come up with a reasonable agreement that raises the spending caps to make sure we can properly finance both our defense and non-defense needs, controlntains a prudent of our deficits and that we can do that in short order. it's not that complicated. you